‘Speaking, writing, and discoursing are not mere acts of communication; they are above all acts of compulsion. Please follow me. Trust me, for deep feeling and understanding require total commitment.’ — Trinh T Minh-ha
‘If we look at the process of “understanding” beings and ideas as it operates in western society, we find that it is founded on an insistence on this kind of transparency. In order to “understand” and therefore accept you, I must reduce your density to this scale of conceptual measurement which gives me a basis for comparisons and perhaps for judgements.’ — Edouard Glissant
We often feel distressed and — after our pain subsides — disappointed with how the condition of psychosis and people experiencing the schizophrenia spectrum have been used in writing. The guise of ‘understanding’ illness provides cover for morbid, controlling curiosities that play into sensationalised and market-driven entertainment. We search for a detour, unsure if there is another way. We as the authors of this work also acknowledge our complicity in the value-adding cycle — and so — this is an attempt to return to and concentrate on the ethics of our representations.
‘Who am I?’ is a different question from ‘who are we?’ The individual identities and lonelinesses in our exchanges have been blurred. Who speaks and who responds is realigned and misaligned. We break our lines with the hope for this utterance to unlock rather than latch. Or affirm. Yet — though we blur — it would be antithetical to publish this piece anonymously. As two people who happen to read/write/live inextricably with the matters explored across these lines — we take responsibility for our urges to produce and perform our expressions through this exchange.
We have attempted to ensure that the individuals referred to within this exchange are not reduced to dominant diagnostic and social scripts. In the process of writing we find no system of representation contains their/our/these experiences. For instance, the concept of ‘episode’ seems a strained and ineffective narratorial device, inaccurately suggesting emplotment. Experience is neither sequential nor isolated. Yet the episode persists even as we try to relate in another way. We search for another way of expressing, all the while with our old books and tongues and the adamance that our perceptions of who we love and care for should not be central — ours is a secondary experience. It is a painful and loving privilege even to reflect and write about such subject matters. We are aware of our intentionality. And we observe our intentions to render openness and reject simplification slips, resists and snares on the lines. They thicken and become something else, unintended and unknown.
You are given the opportunity to read, reject and absorb as you will. We ask that you consider your desire to understand. Like Trinh T Minh-ha, we ask for deep feeling. Like Edouard Glissant, we demand the right to opacity.
On creating discourse, I’ll just start —
We’re not really given a choice
where/when we begin our lives & I feel
this connection when beginning
weighted conversations —
there’s a strain to lift or to push down
or against & this means there will
be leakage, like pressing lilies
between a discarded phone book
without removing the stamen
& yet why must I feel that there’s a heaviness
when I understand that me writing
to you is an attempt to ease & alleviate —
It’s like the train that shakes the walls
of my mum’s — she’s poor
so there’s the freight train
& she lives alone.
I read this nod, nod, nodding. Thank you
for these problems. Yes — what little choice
we have when beginning these exchanges
& the awful tendency to do this is actually the reason
I started therapy in the first place. My first
appointment was about ten years ago, eleven
I remember when we were talking the last
time we saw each other —
we wanted to work out a kind of way
in which we discourse on the roles
of psychosis, of violence, of trauma
& the ways they are & aren’t represented
in dominant modes of narrative, to rewrite
or reshape as a challenge, as a procedure of ethics
to open rather than to close & yet such
alternative perspectives have been sensed
from our own piercing angles of reality —
There’s a return to the subjective & the who
speaks on behalf of or for — like a drop earring
there is a dangling —
Scared of mishandling the actuality
because it’s more than a truth
the figure of the I leans so much
when italicised — like a slash / & a slash
can be vicious or instructive like separating
the features of a text — or the physical
body — so perhaps for the love
of Barthes & for the love of our subjects
we rely on ‘the I, in order to stage an
utterance, not an analysis.’
We are now the I & the / within
this script & this text holds our voices.
In ‘The Gender of Sound’, Anne Carson
writes: ‘There is the haunting garrulity
of the nymph Echo’ who Carson details
‘is described by Sophokles as “the girl with no door
on her mouth”’ placing ‘a door on the female mouth
has been an important project of patriarchal culture
from antiquity to the present day. Its chief tactic
is an ideological association of female sound
with monstrosity, disorder and death.’
Your voice reading a line from your poem,
‘History of the Philosophy of Colour’ often
reverberates — especially when I’m confronted
with having to legitimise myself so I say in my head
in your voice: ‘say it in a big loud voice’ & I ask
how is it that poetry allows your voice
to be louder than any other form?
Yet poetry has never felt like a passion — more
like a necessity — but is this just a trick & perhaps
what Clarice Lispector meant in The Passion According
to GH when she wrote: ‘I’m searching, I’m
searching. I’m trying to understand. Trying to give
what I’ve lived to somebody else and I don’t know
to whom, but I don’t want to keep what I lived.
I don’t know what to do with what I lived,
I’m afraid of that profound disorder.’
So there was this sense of a medical emergency.
But I think now I was kind of gaslighting myself —
like an old fluorescent at the chemist warehouse
& they were so understanding when I explained
what happened when the medication ran out
& there was some magical thinking in that idea
that because I’d so recently written & then published
about such a private matter — one which is not
entirely or properly mine to use in writing,
that I had summoned the illness back.
The interesting thing about mental illness
is that ultimately, it isn’t that interesting.
Or rather, there never really seems
to be anything to say about it. Or rather I fear
I make it interesting or I make it up. I remember
telling the story about the voices & the getting
up from the carpet with my legs to drive her
at fourteen & seeing the guy’s tears well
as I told this story in bed on a Sydney afternoon
& I was bored but scared & I remember reading
Elizabeth Bishop — I’ll look up the quote
properly later, it’s so perfect — she wrote
that one day her mother went mad & was placed
in an asylum & that’s all there is to say about that.
I know this quote is somewhere —
I think we need this quote & I’ll keep looking.
But then I don’t care if I don’t find it. What
if I don’t find it? The desire to seek is one
of ownership & I want to reject it — yet I keep
searching & it’s felt in the strokes
of Mari L'Esperance’s ‘Finding My Mother’:
‘Near dusk I find her in a newly mown field, lying still
and face down in the coarse stubble. Her arms
are splayed out on either side of her body, palms open
and turned upward like two lilies, the slender fingers
gently curling, as if holding onto something.’
This twists into a story by Bishop — do you know ‘In the Village’?
It begins: ‘A scream, the echo of a scream,
hangs over that Nova Scotian village.’
It continues: ‘Because in Boston she had not got any better,
in months and months — or had it been a year?
In spite of the doctors, in spite of the frightening
expenses, she had not got any better.’
It continues: ‘First, she had come home, with her child.
Then she had gone away again, alone,
and left the child. Then she had come home.
Then she had gone away again,
with her sister; and now she was home again.’
There is a fire at the neighbour’s barn.
Everyone seems cheerful, ‘but the smell
of burned hay is awful, sickening’
It continues: ‘The front room is empty.
Nobody sleeps there. Clothes are hung there.’
Our shrieks dangle over that pause, the one
that you’re given when you describe your own
account with what you’re living. When this description
takes place outside of a film, or poem, or song,
there’s always a stretched intermission —
the unchosen separation between representation
& reality — a messy play & I’ve lost my lines.
So the first thing I’ll say is that I never discuss
my direct experience with serious mental illness,
although it could easily go down the definitive
story of my childhood. I just frame it. I just allude.
She loved Tennyson. ‘Break, break, break,’
it’s so eerie that in the ten or so
years that I’ve been in therapy that it’s only
occurred to me to talk about my mum a few times,
& rarely, as far as I’m aware, using the terminology
of clinical psychiatry — which is such a limited perspective.
I am garrulous in analysis. Word-play perfect. I talk
about my father. I want to be liked.
The front room of her house is empty. Nobody sleeps
there. Though clothes are neatly hung in the wardrobe
on wire yet-sturdy hangers. I’ve slept in that room
for three months — across the hall from the bed
where it all occurred. But the front room is empty
again & the clothes are now too small. For a long time
my mum was very, very sick & very much being
understood in a clinical setting when I was growing
up. As far as I know there is no family embargo
on the topic, but the way events unfolded were/are
so messy & traumatic that I think there’s a reluctance
to go back to that time for fear of, I’m not sure what
but in any case, the reluctance —
my sister & me had to live at my uncle’s
& where were our clothes?
To go back has partly informed the basis for my feeling
that this is a family secret & this is why I can’t understand
why some can so readily write about such circumstances?
I never really wrote about my mother’s colossal
breakdown until last summer which is the time of psychosis
& drives & drawn out conclusions. ‘What are you thinking about?’
asks the opening line of Jack Spicer’s ‘Psychoanalysis: An Elegy’
after which a desire is expressed to ‘write a poem that is slow as a summer
As slow getting started.’
A ground floor bedroom at the Fremantle YMCA.
A folded shirt in a blue plastic tub.
System six. As clean as a summer —
That old friend was visiting Perth late last year
& sent me a photo of a landmark she was standing
in front of while she was waiting to meet her dad.
The landmark was London Court — basically
a colonial arcade with a big clock facade, built by
goldrush settlers in Western Australia.
The photo jolted something in me & I went & I wrote —
in the cleanest way — my first & only writing
about my mum & madness & how this subject
isn’t a subject to write about — it’s an actuality.
I made it a clock.
The veracity of a reality enforces limitations
when it comes to expressions — no matter the form.
Perhaps our interchange will turn to something
that we desire as a form of alleviation —
possibly the pangs of hope we share might allow
for what is ineffable — is this what we want?
Is there a want in/out of any of this?
It’s not fair for me to force my hand onto yours
as I turn towards you — it’s an act that’s inevitably
about me — about my want to touch
you as a palpable act of reassurance
that I’m listening — but I should just be
absorbing, should just be processing
& I am — but I also desire to demonstrate
perhaps as means of self-validation
within this act of reciprocity —
‘left hand, right hand
like an open eye, an eye closed:
one hand flat against the trapdoor,
the other hand knocking, knocking.’ I clench
these words of Aracelis Girmay’s from the poem
‘Consider the Hands that Write this Letter’.
I compressed the poem, ‘London Court’
for publication during a time my mum was staying
with my son & me in Melbourne & then the worst
thing happened — her flight home was cancelled,
& she couldn’t get another one for a few days.
Two days into her extended stay she took me aside
to tell me she’d run out of her medication
& then — it was like she was suddenly having another
colossal episode. ‘Like’, precisely in the sense
that I was backlighting everything she was saying
& doing with the questions: ‘is she acting any
differently?’ & ‘oh no, has she lost it?’
I needed confirmation about what I saw
when the chair spun around —
validation that the same thing isn’t happening
to me — but why —
why must I always return to myself?
It’s beautiful, it’s beautiful, & it’s beautiful.
I keep thinking this as I read over your words
& I can see your face & I want to reach out & hold
your hand — but this is a tired gesture & even
so — this impulse isn’t fair because there are no gloves
& the wounds on my fingers are seeping into your skin.
Her hands often shake, not her fingers but her hands.
I wrote down that ‘figures rule the world’
because there was something you inscribed
in your letter about things not adding up.
Goethe doesn’t add up.
Or am I just envious of Young Werther when
he writes: ‘How happy I am that I am gone!’
I remember talking with a friend who had just
had a friend diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.
We were sitting on the carpet & the softness
incited how empty the house seemed. ‘I hate it’
she said. ‘I hate schizophrenia. It’s so boring & horrible.’
I remember just shaking my head, sighing, totally
agreeing. Yes. I smiled. A monster. I hate schizophrenia.
Again it felt like such a taboo, or that by speaking
so irreverently we were summoning something — seductive
other than the fibres we felt against our thighs.
There had been a family lunch & after all the sandwiches
had been eaten my Aunty took this as cue to stand
up & wash the meal dishes. I helped
her by drying cutlery with a damp towel. I asked how things were
& she answered softly against the clanging of the plates,
the towel becoming heavier, she spoke about
her son/my cousin & how she hated the process
of signing in her name each time she visited
him in forensic prison. She couldn’t comprehend how
the action of her signature made any difference,
as if the obligation for her to scrawl
her name down on paper equalled a form of
responsibility — that as a mother
she was really the mechanism at fault upon
which she signed her name & address against.
What do they do with all of the signed
paper slips? Bishop wrote of slips
& surfaces: ‘The address of the sanatorium
is in my grandmother’s handwriting, in purple
indelible pencil. On smoothed-out wrapping paper.
It will never come off.’
I’m sitting with my sister & Aunty — we wait for
the time of 1:45pm, visiting hours, there’s a buzz
& a heavy door is pushed open by a nurse & security
guard — we must pass through a grey frame
which is a metal detector — this metal detector is both
an entry & an exit — I feel it would be tactless
to describe the security metal detector as a portal
because this isn’t a threshold or indication
of any poetic or imaginative possibility.
This is a security metal detector: a surveillance machine.
There are two little girls wearing floral dresses
& mary jane sandals. They’re dressed
to demonstrate that their visit marks a special
occasion. I am also a visitor. All of the visitors
in the waiting room enact their own
surveillance as the two little girls, laughing
because they know they’re being watched,
enter the security metal detector: they pass through.
I’m at work today & one of my tasks is to amend
an article for publication. It’s so boring & horrible.
One of the editors complained there were too many passive
sentences in the work. I was surprised looking
at how strange my sentences were.
So archaic & twisted, avoidant. Of action
I felt ‘I lost my mother’s watch’ like in Bishop’s
‘One Art’. I can’t remember where I was when I originally
wrote this article — I’m curious about the beginning of
my errors. It’s that
I read all this passive voice as a sign of trepidation —
dread writing is summoning, brightly bringing about.
Do you know that James Joyce story
‘The Little Cloud’? It’s all about passivity & timidity,
those awful afflictions that oddly seem to take
you nowhere & everywhere. I think there’s a restriction
on what I write about. Something that won’t be spoken.
An eye roll. An old woman breathing. I love the passive
voice, how it isn’t allowed. But it keeps lining up
sometimes choking. I can’t ask for permission, but
I can choke & not write this, ‘the following fact,
which in turn destroys a content as
yet unwritten: I don’t exist’, Bhanu Kapil’s deletion
& snow, Schizophrene.
I spoke to my cousin on the phone
today — I stood outside on the grass
& he sat in a chair inside
a temperature-controlled room.
I confessed this discussion & he gave
me his permission for us to refer
to him within this exchange.
I must not take advantage of this generosity.
But I believe I’ve already done this
& what about my Aunty? There’s still
a restriction which is necessary
& I’m trying to be respectful towards
the people I love — but most days
my body shakes with the weight of disguise.
Susan Sontag writes that we live in ‘A culture
in which shock has become a leading stimulus
of consumption and source of value.’
I was reading Sontag’s Regarding the Pain
of Others when my cousin had his episode,
this book was perhaps one of the things
which sustained me the most as the media
publicity & false reportages concerning
my family complicated our process
of grief & acceptance. Nobody, aside
from my family & few friends, could actually
hear or see me. People just wanted
to know the details & so did I —
Sometimes I would/do answer questions, even
revel in the attention, not because it alleviates
but because I’m performing instead of
as Adrienne Rich writes in ‘Trying to Talk to A Man’
being in a position where you’re discussing
about how people care ‘for each other
in emergencies — laceration, thirst’ but instead
you are gazed at ‘like an emergency’.
For me — there’s an inseparable connection
between writing & my cousin’s episode
as he expressed his delusions through
poetry. He now expresses his recovery
through poetry. We write poetry to each other.
My cousin is a poet & he writes about the ocean.
We send our poetry in letters —
mine are opened
before he is allowed to read them —
My latest letter quoted H.D.
than a wet rose
single on a stem —
you are caught in the drift.’
The night that my cousin had his major episode
he published a poem about his visions
in an obscure online chat room.
I know this because he told
my sister about the poem when she visited
him. I wanted to visit him too —
but there was no room for me in the car
that day & since my sister & cousin are closer in age,
my Aunty thought it best that she go rather than me.
A role reversal we both hadn’t experienced —
In fact the poem doesn’t really do anything, it undoes
all the marriages to husbands by counting them all,
& everything counts & everything loses its name.
My poem hates fiction. But my poem full
of pastiches & borrowings thinks about how
accommodating it is, form & take all
you can give these other voices — listen
or compress or amplify your own. If you have one.
A voices. Is it fiction, diagnosis?
I read Joyce’s ‘A Little Cloud’ outside tonight
at my mum’s house. Everyone had gone to bed
& I was alone, except for two possums,
many spiders & insects. I sat outside & only moved
in once I was cold, dearest ‘Little Chandler’.
I relate to the character most particularly with these lines:
‘Could he write something original? He was not sure
what idea he wished to express, but the thought
that a poetic moment had touched him took
life within him like an infant hope. He stepped onward bravely.’
To turn back to the lines —
‘Everything gets crazy. When nude
I turned my back because he likes the back.
He moved onto me’ writes Anne Carson in ‘The Glass Essay’.
& they say the trauma around losing
my mother is linked to my braving attachment
in other immature, insecure, destructive
& compulsive ways, but are there other ways?
Whenever my therapist surmises I get annoyed & accuse
him of rationalising my dishonourable, appalling behaviour —
I asked my therapist today: ‘but hasn’t everyone lost their mother?’
& he gave me a look & said: ‘but not like this.’ Screaming at
airports. Or softly typing this on the plane. But there’s so much
I haven’t responded to & I want to trace back —
Ever since reading Barbara Guest’s poem ‘20’ I’ve been
thrust to a sharpness & now it’s all dashes —
‘Each episode is important
that’s what it is! Sequences —
I’ve got going a twenty-act drama
the theatre of the active
the critics are surely there
even the actors’.
But you can see the sunset from any balcony
whether rented or owned — who is this set really for?
Detract all personal detail with line breaks
because this scene will ‘jut
when embedded into narrative’.
What comes through in writing is this guilt
about understanding the act
of making the pain of others my
own — I am so possessive it seems
that when suffering is near me nod nod nodding
I just go for it, grasp it, take it. Simone Weil was like this
terribly understanding & close: ‘the ones who do
the crushing feel nothing; it is the person crushed
who feels what is happening.’ Simone closes & activates.
Someone close went ‘crazy’ — so the first question
& perhaps indeed the final question,
is ‘and me too?’ & I think this happens
precisely because we can’t answer the deeper
question: ‘why?’ & I think we don’t like to stop asking
this question though it has nothing to do with
living or failing to live. I have not written about
my mother, once again. Once again — so close
I have made a cake & it is rich although dry &
there are always dishes to do & it is always their birthday.
The way that reading enacts
a consumption that dogs & separates the writer
from their own words. I guess there are positive
& negatives to this, but what happens when you know
the writer & care about them & want so much to reassure
them & say: ‘it’s ok. It’s not your fault & you’re not a bad person.’
You are doing your best — it’s the best that you can do.
‘Life is hell, but at least there are prizes’ writes
Janet Frame — you must adapt to ‘take one’s own deserved
place on the edge, reading to leap,
not to hang back in a status-free huddle where bodies
were warm together’. But where is my prize?
My cake? Where is my fruitcake?
She said over the phone: ‘I was going to ring
but I didn’t want to haunt you’ —
In her book Eros the Bittersweet in Carson writes: ‘The words we
read and words we write never say exactly
what we mean. The people we love are never just
as we desire them. The two symbols
never perfectly match. Eros is in between.’
In the same text, Carson continues: ‘There is something
pure and indubitable about the notion that eros is lack’
Are the discussions of our experiences demonstrating a lack?
& inform the eros of understanding illness. We love & yet
can’t wait to leave & get to the airport an hour early.
Twenty sequences towards Guest: ‘What an idiotic number!
Sleep is twenty’. This haunting age & figure —
twenty stabs into his father’s body. Glass vases
filled with ‘flowers clicking twenty times
because they like to repeat themselves.’
In The Powers of Horror Julia Kristeva writes: ‘The shame
of compromise, of being in the middle of treachery.
The fascinated start that leads me toward and separates
me from them.’ This is us.
We are both separate & connected by shame & desire.
The first time I visited my cousin in forensic
prison I told him the that forest-green uniform
complemented his green eyes. It was a monstrous expression
all I could do after this was mouthful the hot chocolate
made & stirred by a man also preparing himself
to transition back into society after being
withheld for more than a decade.
Then I leave again. It takes a year. I place the chocolate
cake on the counter near the kettle. I look back
& its soft reused plastic bag contains it.
Because she wrapped it.
The kitchen is empty. It spans the grey gaslight.
The entrance contains photographs. The poem
contains birds. She stands under the mobile, it spins
from a hook in the ceiling. Paper swifts circle
her smiling grey head. I see them crowning her
indubitably drawn to the cake. Glazed fruitcake.
seem to be syntactical
rather than thematic —
the way breaking down her door
created difficulties with her landlord.
Let’s stay in touch. I was born
thirty-seven years ago — it’s true
it’s been reported in a newspaper,
a poster, a flyer on the wall. I was on television.
All of the faces were screened for the breaking
news & I was very concerned, so I tried to contact
all of the editors by calling all of the phone numbers.
They promised to write down my name & record
my words — but they never quoted
& so because of this I incite Lisa Robertson:
‘my work shall be obscure
as Love! unlinguistic! I
bludgeon the poem with desire
and stupidity’ — it scares me when I read/express
language which conjures violence & yet I’m forced
to abide by the term ‘landlord’. Figures.
You already love me. Figures rule the world — well,
& badly — well & wells are like clocks.
Mistakes are watched & clocked & my mother used to say:
‘can’t help it’ whenever I apologised & I still love
that she never used a subject. Swift twist of gold
around a wrist. Distraction doesn’t diminish the sense
someone’s leaving. But someone usually leaves
a room & they usually glance back or sideways or at the birds
on the ceiling or they leave for good —
unwrapping the cake in their lap with cunning & grace
& in contrast, mistaken or not — someone usually stays
just like the illness. Postures more than understands. Ponders
more than understands. Ponders an attitude, let’s stay
in touch. I live in System six. Can’t help it. You love me.
Just a trace. Just a touch, a card — say just. Just say.
Open the card. Nothing is written there. No one can write it.
Open the card on the plane you take to leave.
An endpoint or a climax. Do you wish for one?
We are not writers of fiction & prose will not save
any of us or poetry.
Perhaps instead try acting everywhere like a verb,
throw sets & scenes & just
sum it up — the world is breaking lines
she softly opens the card & twists into the breach —
We have enacted adjustments to the lineation to some of the citations included in this exchange. Such alternations are not intended merely to conform the writing of others into our chosen poetics — but for the sake of offering and opening up previously written ideas within the specific context of this exchange which for us could/can only occur within a form where lines are broken and fractured so as to leak out spills of new thoughts/understandings.
Barthes, R 1978 A lover's discourse: Fragments (trans Richard Howard), New York: Hill and Wang
Bishop, E 1991 ‘One art’, in Complete poems, London: Chatto & Windus, p. 178
Bishop, E 2011 ‘In the village’, in Prose, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, pp. 62–78
Carson, A 1986 Eros the bitter sweet, Champaign: Dalkey Archive Press
Carson, A 1995 ‘The glass essay’ (pp. 1–38), and ‘The gender of sound’ (pp. 119–37), in Glass, irony & God, New York: New Directions
Frame, J 2009 ‘Prizes’, in The selected stories of Janet Frame, Berkeley: Counterpoint
Girmay, A 2007 ‘Consider the hands that write this letter’, in Teeth: Poems, Evanston, Curbstone Books, p. 38
Glissant, E 1997 The poetics of relation (trans Betsy Wing), Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press
Goethe, JW von 1984 ‘Sunday, January 31 1830’, in Conversations with Eckermann (trans John Oxenford), San Francisco: North Point, p. 346
Goethe, JW von 1989 The sorrows of Young Werther (trans Michael Hulse), London: Penguin
Guest, B 2008 ‘20’, in The collected poems of Barbara Guest, Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, pp. 83–84
H. D. 1988 ‘Sea rose’ in H.D.: Selected Poems (ed. Louis L Martz), New York, New Directions, p. 3
Joyce, J 2000 ‘A little cloud’, in Dubliners, London: Penguin, pp. 65–81
Kapil, B 2011 Schizophrene, New York: Nightboat Books
Kristeva, J 1982 The powers of horror: An essay on abjection (trans Leon S Roudiez), New York: Columbia University Press
L'Esperance, M 2008 ‘Finding my mother’, in The darkened temple, Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, pp. 39–40
Lispector, C 1988 The passion according to GH (trans Ronald W Sousa), Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press
Minh-ha, TT 1989 Woman, native, other: Writing postcoloniality and feminism, Bloomington: Indiana University Press
Rich, A 1973 ‘Trying to talk with a man’, in Diving into the wreck: Poems 1971–1972, New York: Norton, pp. 3–4
Robertson, L 1997 Debbie: An epic, Vancouver: New Star Books
Royal, A 2017 ‘Speaking Camellia’, in Red Room Poetry, https://redroomcompany.org/poem/autumn-royal/speaking-camellia/
Sontag, S 2011 Regarding the pain of others, London: Penguin Books
Spicer, J 2008 ‘Psychoanalysis: An elegy’, in My vocabulary did this to me: The collected poetry of Jack Spicer (eds. Peter Gizzi and Kevin Killian), Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, pp. 31–33
Tennyson, AL 2007 ‘Break, break, break’, in Alfred Lord Tennyson: Selected Poems (ed. Christopher Ricks), London: Penguin, p. 76
Van, L 2014 ‘History of the philosophy of colour’, in Peril, http://peril.com.au/back-editions/history-of-the-philosophy-of-colour/
Van, L 2017 ‘London Court’, in Suburban poetry review (February),
Weil, S 1978 Lectures on philosophy (trans Hugh Price), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press